For those interested in discovering something about the industrial past within and around the Wyre Forest area and beyond.  

The group meets once a month, usually on the second Friday, at 10.00am, unless otherwise stated.

Meetings in Winter are now held at The Elizabeth Mills Centre in Stourport. The Hall is large enough to allow social distancing, has level access, free parking and a hearing loop. The rest of the year generally takes the form of  visits to a place of industrial historical and contemporary interest - mostly half day visits but a few full day outings.

Our "at home" meetings are generally led by members who have wide ranging interests and fascinating insights into the wide subject that is our Industrial History.

Proposed visits, which were unable to take place, in 2020 included the Morgan Factory, Blaenavon Big Pit, Amazon "Fulfilment Centre" , Rugeley, Bristol Aerospace Museum, the JCB works and Soho House. For some longer trips we are lucky to have the use of a minibus.

During summer 21 the group met outdoors, at Titterstone Clee, the Stourbridge Canal and Broseley.

On 8th October, the meeting will be a Zoom meeting on "Making Money"- looking at coinage: On November 12th we will be meeting at our new winter venue, the Elizabeth Mills Centre in Stourport, when one of our members is presenting on the History of Stereo Recording. We hope this and the December meeting will be hybrid - members can dial in on Zoom to actively participate in the meeting if they prefer not to attend in person. Our Dec 10th meeting will be our usual light hearted Christmas Quiz meeting and planning meeting.

All dates are subject to Covid levels and restrictions.

For further information, please email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Programme 2020/21


11th Sept Elan Valley Aqueduct Mike and Sue

25th Sept Brooklands- external speaker Tim Morris

9th Oct Monopoly Industrial History Ralph

23rd Oct tbd- probably a film

13th Nov Measurement 3 -David

27th Nov The China Clay Industry external speaker Malcolm Gould 

11th Dec Annual Quiz and bring your own mince pies



Sample of Zoom meetings in the first part of 2021 see above for new programme from Oct.

March 26th Industries along the Upper severn Valley

April 9th The Nuclear Industry

April 23rd Brecon Tramways

Friday 11th January Willow Court, Franche 10-12 am History of Toothpaste Manufacturing and the first proposed underground rail link to Paris
Fri  8th February Willow Court, Franche, 10-12am Members contributions: bring an item, a book, a location or story on any Industrial History theme which interests you: 5-10 mins max.
Fri  8th March Willow Court, Franche, 10-12:00 S Staffs mine drainage: Severn Trows
Fri 12th April Environsort, Norton Worcester 10:00am Visit to the recycling centre for Worcs. Free. Meet there or 9:00am Broadwaters to share transport
WED 8th May  SVR Engine sheds Bridgnorth 12:00 Tour of behind the scenes at SVR Engineering. Meet there or 11:15 Broadwaters for car sharing
Fri 14th June Gloucester Docks and the 'Hereford Bull' All day visit by minibus. Transport cost £10. 8:00am at Broadwaters CP
Fri 12th July The Potteries All day visit by minibus to the Stoke area. Transport cost £10.  9:00am at Broadwaters CP
Fri 13th Sept Guided walk around Bewdley Industries 10:30 at Bewdley Museum Approx 1.5hrs. 10:00 at Broadwaters to car share.Approx cost £4:50 ph
Fri Oct 11th Franche Community Church DY11 5QA Member's talk on "The World's 1st Underground Railway"
Fri Nov 8th Hobsons Brewery Cleobury Mortimer 12:30-3:30 Tour of Brewery with Ploughmans lunch and 'samples'! Cost £15 Members transport. Car share
Fri 13th Dec

Planning meeting and sharing of "I didn't know that!" based loosely on Industrial History

Franche Community Church 10:00am

Using members ideas and experience to plan the next year.



12/1/18 Talks on Cumbrian Industry and Electric Tram Stud System


Willow Court, Franche

9/2/18 Film on the Ironbridge: talk on "Cutting"


Willow Court, Franche

9/3/18 Industrial Archaeology investigation near Dowles Brook. Wellies and waterproofs! Meet at Car Park 10 am
13/4/18 Tour Abberley Clock Tower and Hall 9;30 at Broadwaters to car share, 10:30 at Hall
11/5/18 Dudley Canal Museum and Boat trip Canal Museum:
8/6/18 Charlecote Flour Mill:tour by miller CV35 8BB
13/7/18 The Blorenge, S Wales :Day trip Minibus booked
10/8/18 TBA- if any!  
13/9/18 John Taylor Bell Foundry: Day Trip NOTE-now  Thursday
12/10/18 Shelsey Mill TBA

Gun Barrel Proof House NB This is a Thursday

Talk and Tour 

£15ph, max 10

10-1:30 incl coffee

14/12/18 Planning Meeting and Quiz Willow Court, Franche 10-12


13th January 2017

Planning the 2017 programme

Willow Court Community Room, Franche Kidderminster DY11 5AU

From 10.00am to 12.noon

10th February 2017

Members' presentations

Standardising mass production methods - based on the production of the Springfield rifle - Mike Cutler

Coal mining - Alan Williams and Tom Elliott

Willow Court Community Room, Franche, Kidderminster, DY11 5AU

From 10.00am to 12 noon

10th March 2017

Birmingham Museum Storage Collection

Leave Kidderminster Railway Station at 9.30am

Cost of visit TBC

14th April 2017

Knowles Mill, Dowles Brook, near Bewdley (postponed)

There is a three-quarter mile walk to and from the mill on uneven surface

Led by Tom Elliott  (POSTPONED)

12th May 2017

Snailbeach Mine near Minsterley, Shropshire

Car sharing - leave Kidderminster at 9.30am

Cost of visit TBC


6th June 2017


Hereford Waterworks Museum (TBC)

Car sharing - leave Kidderminster at 9.30am

Cost of visit TBC

14th July 2017

The Davis Collection of Industrial and Agricultural Vehicles, Redditch (this will take place later in the year - TBC)


Knowles Mill, Dowles Brook, near Bewdley

There is a three-quarter mile walk to and from the mill on uneven surface

Led by Tom Elliott 


11th August 2017

No Meeting

8th September 2017

Coleham Pumping Station, Shrewsbury, SY3 7DN: 2:00pm

Chance to see engines in steam

Car sharing - leave Kidderminster 12:30: meet Broadwaters Car Park for car sharing.

NB. Limited car park at site, on road parking nearby.

Cost of visit £3pp, minimum 10 people.

13th October 2017

Worcester Cathedral Roof Space

Cost of visit £6 pp.

10th November 2017

Bradley Workshop

A chance to visit the Canal & River Trust workshop where they make and repair lock gates.

Travel details to follow

8th December 2017    


Programme arrangements might change, so please check the website for details

8th January

Willow Court Room

Glimpses of industrial history in and around the Wyre Forest

Mike Carter

12th February

Willow Court Room

10.00 am to 12 noon

Sugar and Salt

Discovering something about the histories of the once local sugar and salt industries of Kidderminster and Droitwich

Contributions from members

11th March

Walsall Leather Museum

8th April

Newman Brothers Coffin Works, Jewellery Quarter, Birmingham

13th May

The Blorenge industrial area, near Abergavenny - (This visit will now take place during the summer - date to be arranged)

(A day visit)

Visit to Drakelow Tunnels with Social History Group (Leader Janice Evans)


10th June

Churchill Forge, near Blakedown, Kidderminster

8th July

Daniels Mill, near Bridgnorth

Meet at the mill for 10.30am

12th August


28th September

Dudley Tunnel - an extended tour (6 hours) through the Dudley and Netherton tunnels

Joint visit with the Geology Group - a day visit

(Booking essential)

Cancelled - insufficient numbers

14th October

Willow Court Room

10.00am  - 12.00noon

 A history of measurement

David Strucket

Please note change of date

11th November

Members' projects

9th December

Willow Court Room

Planning the 2017 programme



Programme arrangements might change, so please check the website for details

30th January

Members' Projects -  starter session - with Alan Yates

(For further informationcontact Mike Carter This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. )


13th February

The mechanics of spinning and weaving at Kidderminster Museum of Carpet (from 10.30 - 1.00pm - £6 per person)


13th March

A History of Boats and the River Severn - a talk by David Struckett


10th April

A visit to a local carpet factory 



8th May

The Jewellery Quarter, Pen Museum and Assay Office in Birmingham



14th June

Waterworks Museum, Hereford

(NB - this is a Sunday visit in order to see machines in steam)



10th July

The Birmingham Museum Collections Centre



No meeting  

28th September

A visit to the SVR loco shed in Bridgnorth

Please note change of day and date


9th October

A Project Day 'Weave and Design' at Kidderminster Museum of Carpet

Postponed - to be rearranged

13th November

Members' projects - an opportunity to share and exchange information.

Willow Court Room, Wilton Avenue, Franche, Kidderminster DY11 5AU at 10.00am

Cost per person £2 including refreshments


11th December

Planning the 2016 programme  

Programme arrangements might change, please check the website for details

10th January

  Gunpowder Making - talk by Sue and Mike Cutler

  The Lock Inn, Wolverley at 2.00pm

14th February

Chain making - talk by John Gill 

The Lock Inn, Wolverley at 2.00pm

14th March

Worcester Porcelain visit

11.00am. Meet at Broadwtares car park at 10.00am

13th April 

The Davis Collection of Industrial and Agricultural Vehicles, Redditch (TBC)


21st May

Redditch Needle Mill 

Please note change of date for this visit

13th June

Day visit to the Victorian Village, Ironbridge Gorge Museum - a guided tour

11th July

The industrial history of Bewdley - a guided tour of exhibits at Bewdley Museum, with demonstrations


No meeting

12th September

The industrial history of Worcester Cathedral - a guided tour by Chris Guy, Cathedral Archaeologist

Health warning!  A lot of climbing up spiral stairs, along narrow passageways, over uneven surfaces. 


Report of a joint visit with the Geology group to Snailbeach Mines, Shropshire

21st November

Industrialising carpet making

A guided talk by Melvyn Thompson at The Museum of Carpet, Kidderminster (£6 per person inc refreshments)

12th December

General meeting - planning the 2015 programme

Kidderminster Baptist Church, Franche Road, Kidderminster at 2.00 pm



26th February

Kidderminster Museum of Carpet

An excellent starting point for anyone interested in gaining practical awareness of local industrial history


8th March

Bewdley's Lost Industries  

Using a history trail devised by Fenella Flack and produced by The Bewdley Historical Group, The Bewdley Museum and Kenneth Hobson


5th April

Iron Manufacturing

A talk given by Rick Jarvis

7th April

Davis Collection

A visit to the Davis collection of civil engineering and agricultural vehicles


12th April

Churchill Forge

A visit to one of over 100 mills that used to function within the area during the 17th to 19th centuriues and that made use of the local river system that feeds into the River Stour.


10th May


 Daniels Mill, Bridgnorth

A visit to a fully functioning corn mill powered by the largest working iron waterwheel in England


14th June

The History of the Stourport Canal Basin

A guided tour of one of the busiest canal - river ports on the Staffordshire - Worcestershire canal during the late 18th and early 19th century 


11th October

 Shelsley Water Mill, Shelsley Walsh

A restored, working watermill, with wooden machinery, cast iron waterwheel and belt-driven farming machinery.

8th November

Red House Glass Cone, Dudley

Guided visit, with glass blowing demonstration.

18th December

Bronze casting